Sunday 7 August 2022

Visit to Fleam Dyke - Chalk Hill Blue butterflies everywhere!

30th July 2022 - four ANW members had a great trip along Fleam Dyke, witnessing literally thousands of Chalk Hill Blue butterflies. At virtually every step there was a Chalk Hill Blue on the path, and looking either side one could easily see ten or twelve within a few feet. Along the kilometre or so of the dyke we walked, there really must have been thousands. Male Chalk Hill Blue butterflies are pale blue on the upper with a contrasting black and white border, whereas the females are mostly brown with orange spots on the lower wing, also with a white border.  Undersides are very similar to the Common Blue, but lack the bright orange spots on the upper wing, with males tending to be paler than females.

There were also one or two of several other butterfly species, and also a few interesting chalkland plants such as Horseshoe Vetch and Clustered Bellflower.

Male Chalk Hill Blue
Female Chalk Hill Blue
Male Chalk Hill Blue
Female Chalk Hill Blue
Mating pair Chalk Hill Blue
Male Chalk Hill Blue on Fireweed
Male Chalk Hill Blue
Female Chalk Hill Blue
Male Chalk Hill Blues on Common Knapweed
Male Chalk Hill Blues
Male Chalk Hill Blue and Small Skipper on Greater Knapweed
Male Chalk Hill Blue on Fireweed
Female Chalk Hill Blue
Comma [photo David F]
Nursery Web Spider
Nursery Web Spider
Nursery Web Spider
Greater Knapweed
Ground Thistle
Squinancy Wort
Common Rock-rose
Abington NatureWatchers in action [photo David F]

[photos by Andy M, unless otherwise indicated]

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The Aims of Abington Naturewatch

At their meeting on 9 April 2005 the members approved this revised version of the aims of Abington Naturewatch:

  • To monitor and record the wildlife (fauna & flora) within the borders of the Abingtons;
  • To encourage protection of our wildlife, maintain its quality and foster its diversity;
  • To promote awareness of the richness, potential and problems of the natural environment of the Abingtons;
  • To cooperate in improving access to the local natural environment for the benefit of all Abington villagers.

Pat Daunt, Founder

The organisation is informal and communication is by email if possible; members are notified of events from time to time. Contact details are maintained by a small "project team". There is currently no membership fee as costs are covered by voluntary contributions at events.

Members are encouraged to report notable sightings of flora and fauna within the Abingtons to the appropriate sector coordinator and an illustrated record is published annually.

A map of the area covered, with some features noted, is available here:>

For more information or to join, please contact David Farrant on (01223) 892871.

Contributions to our records should be sent to sector contacts or either of the above. Photographs may also be submitted to Andy Merryweather (